Confidence regarding European air cargo improved slightly in April from the month before, but shippers and forwarders view most lanes connecting to the continent as “persistently lackluster,” according to the Stifel Nicolaus Logistics Confidence Index.
The air cargo index, a monthly survey of global shippers and forwarders, rose in April to 44.7, up from 42.2 in March. Of the trade lanes connecting to Europe, participants were the most optimistic about shipments to the U.S., but it was the only lane in which confidence fell month-to-month, slipping 0.2 percent.
The Europe-Asia lane saw the largest growth in confidence in April, rising 9.9 percent from March. Optimism about the lane from U.S. to Europe expanded 7.7 percent in the same period, while confidence in the lane from Asia to Europe grew 7.1 percent, according to the index created by Stifel Nicolaus and Transport Intelligence.
“The six-month outlook for air freight remains positive, with a reading of 60.0 for the total index. Significantly, optimism for European imports from the U.S. improved by over 8 percent to 57.7 from last month's already positive reading of 53.3,” according to the report.
The confidence parallels the most recent International Air Transportation Association report, showing growth in global volume, including among European carriers, but that the outlook remains fragile.